Results tagged ‘ Coolray Field ’
A parade of pitchers who could man the mound at Coolray Field in 2015 helped lead the Atlanta Braves to a weekend of four games in which they allowed an average of fewer than three runs per contest. The Braves split the weekend slate and are 8-12 in Grapefruit League play.
Six of seven potential Gwinnett Braves relievers who worked Saturday and Sunday did not allow a run. All seven combined for a 1.08 ERA (1 ER in 8.1 IP) with two saves and two holds. Right-hander Williams Perez (BS, 1; L, 0-1) was the only likely G-Brave pitcher to work Friday. He gave up the final four runs on seven hits, two walks and three strikeouts in a 5-1 loss to the Miami Marlins in Jupiter, Fla.
Atlanta played a pair of split-squad games Saturday. One Braves squad beat the Washington Nationals 5-2 in a home contest at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., and the other portion of the team lost 1-0 to the St. Louis Cardinals in Jupiter.
Possible G-Braves pitchers’ stats vs. Washington:
RHP Michael Kohn (H, 2), 1.0 IP, H, BB.
RHP Juan Jaime (H, 2), 1.0 IP.
RHP Brandon Cunniff (S, 1), 2.0 IP, 2 BB, 2 K.
Potential G-Braves pitchers’ numbers against St. Louis:
RHP Arodys Vizcaino,1.1 IP, H, BB.
RHP Sugar Ray Marimon, 2.0 IP, 2 H, HBP.
RHP Aaron Kurcz (L, 0-1) 0.0 IP, 2 H, ER, BB.
Left-handed reliever Donnie Veal was the only potential G-Braves hurler to pitch Sunday in a 5-3 win over the Detroit Tigers at Champion Stadium. He got his first save of Spring Training with a scoreless ninth inning during which he walked a hitter and struck out two others.
Infielder Pedro Ciriaco led possible G-Braves hitters by going 3-for-6 in two starts, including 2-for-3 against Detroit with three runs batted in. He also picked up a single and a walk as the leadoff hitter and starting shortstop vs. the Nationals.
Potential G-Braves position players’ stats from Friday against Miami:
Eury Perez (CF), 1-for-4, K.
Jesus Flores (C), 1-for-4.
Phil Gosselin (3B), 1-for-2.
Jace Peterson (2B), 0-for-3, BB, K.
John Buck (1B), 0-for-1.
Joey Terdoslavich (pinch hit), 0-for-1, K.
Infielder Sean Kazmar took over at shortstop in the eighth inning but did not receive an at-bat.
Other possible G-Braves position players’ lines Saturday against the Nationals:
Todd Cunningham (CF), 2-for-4, 2B, RBI, K, outfield assist in the third inning on a play when Mike Carp was out trying to reach second base.
Jose Constanza (RF-LF), 1-for-3, R, SB.
Seth Loman (1B), 0-for-4, K.
Cedric Hunter (RF), 1-for-1, R, RBI.
Barrett Kleinknecht (3B), 0-for-1.
Corban Joseph (2B), 0-for-1.
Catcher Steve Rodriguez entered the game as a defensive replacement in the eighth inning but did not receive an at-bat.
Potential G-Braves position players’ stats vs. St. Louis:
Peterson (2B), 2-for-3, K.
Buck (C-1B), 2-for-3.
Gosselin (LF-3B-1B), 0-for-4, K.
Terdoslavich (RF-1B), 0-for-2, BB.
Joe Benson (LF-CF), 0-for-1, BB, threw out Rafael Ortega at home plate from center field in the sixth inning.
Braeden Schlehuber (C), 0-for-1.
Perez (pinch hit), 0-for-1, K.
Kazmar (SS), 0-for-1.
Other possible G-Braves position players’ stats against Detroit:
Perez (RF-CF), 1-for-5, K.
Cunningham (CF), 1-for-3, R, SB.
Constanza (LF), 1-for-1, R, SB.
Gosselin (2B), 0-for-1, RBI, BB, K.
Benson (LF-CF-RF), 0-for-1, BB, K.
Joseph (2B), 0-for-1.
Schlehuber (C), 0-for-1.
Loman (1B), 0-for-1.
Hunter (pinch hit), 0-for-1.
Flores entered the game at catcher as a defensive replacement in the ninth inning but did not receive an at-bat.
The Braves will face the Houston Astros at 1:05 p.m. Monday in Kissimmee, Fla.
Several players who could patrol the diamond at Coolray Field for the Gwinnett Braves in 2015 finished the weekend with standout performances at the plate, as the Atlanta Braves split a pair of games against the Toronto Blue Jays and Houston Astros. They also made their two largest rounds of roster cuts.
The Braves chopped their Spring Training roster by 13 players with cuts made Saturday and Monday.
Top prospect Jose Peraza headlined the six players cut Monday. Atlanta optioned him to Gwinnett and sent right-handed pitcher Tyrell Jenkins to Double-A Mississippi. Right-hander Mauricio Cabrera and left-hander Yean Carlos Gil were optioned to Advanced-A Carolina. Left-handed pitcher Brady Feigl and catcher Jose Yepez were reassigned to Minor League camp.
The Braves reassigned seven players Saturday, including right-handed pitcher Jason Hursh, catchers Matt Kennelly and Chris O’Dowd, infielders Daniel Castro and Rio Ruiz, and outfielders Cedric Hunter and Mallex Smith.
Potential G-Brave returnee Joey Terdoslavich, winner of the 2014 G-Braves’ “Fan Favorite Player” award, belted his first home run of the spring with a three-run shot in the seventh inning Sunday against the Blue Jays in a 10-5 loss at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. He drove in possible G-Braves infielders Pedro Ciriaco and Peraza after Ciriaco led off the frame with a single and Peraza entered as a pinch runner for infielder Alberto Callaspo.
Terdoslavich struck out in his only other at-bat in the ninth inning. Ciriaco finished the game 2-for-5 with a strikeout, and Peraza grounded out to first base in the ninth inning for his only at-bat of the game. Center fielder Todd Cunningham went 2-for-4 with a run-scoring double in the sixth inning and threw out a runner at home plate to end the third.
Other potential G-Braves position players’ Sunday stats vs. Toronto:
Braeden Schlehuber (C), 0-for-3.
Jesus Flores (C, pinch hit), 0-for-1.
John Buck (1B) 0-for-1.
Phil Gosselin (SS-LF), 0-for-1.
Right-hander Ryne Harper was the only pitcher the Braves’ threw against Toronto who projects to spend time in Gwinnett this season. He recorded the final two outs of the fourth inning despite throwing a wild pitch and giving up two hits, including a two-run home run to outfielder Jose Bautista.
Atlanta topped the Astros 6-5 Saturday at Champion Stadium. Left-handed starter Wandy Rodriguez (W, 2-0) picked up his second win of the spring by going four innings with two hits allowed, three walks and two strikeouts.
Other possible Gwinnett pitchers’ stats from Saturday:
RHP Chien-Ming Wang, 0.1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, K.
RHP Justin Jackson (S, 1), 1.0 IP, H, ER.
Second baseman Jace Peterson led potential G-Braves hitters at the plate Saturday, going 1-for-1 with a walk and a run scored.
Other possible G-Braves position players’ stats from Saturday:
Gosselin (2B-SS), 0-for-2, R.
Cunningham (RF-LF), 0-for-2.
Terdoslavich (1B), 0-for-3, 2 K.
Kelly Johnson (3B), 0-for-4, 3 K.
Eury Perez (LF), 0-for-3, 2 K.
Yepez (DH), 0-for-3, K.
Peraza (2B), 0-for-1.
Flores (C, pinch hit), 0-for-1.
Atlanta travels to face the Astros for a 1:05 p.m. game Monday in Kissimmee, Fla.
Right-handed pitcher Cody Martin will have a chance to take his 2014 Gwinnett Braves Most Outstanding Pitcher honors with him to to the Major League side of Spring Training camp when he arrives at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., later this month.
Martin and former G-Braves catchers Jose Yepez and Matt Kennelly are three of 24 players to receive non-roster invitations to Spring Training, the Atlanta Braves announced Tuesday.
Martin, 25, tied fellow right-hander Gus Schlosser for the most wins on the Gwinnett staff with seven, and he led the team with a 3.52 ERA, 26 starts, 13 quality starts, 156.0 innings pitched and 142 strikeouts. He also finished third in the International League in strikeouts, fourth in innings pitched, tied for fourth in starts, fifth among starters with an 8.12 strikeouts-per-9-innings ratio and sixth in ERA.
His premier performance as a G-Brave came on June 25 when he held the Toledo Mud Hens to one run on three hits with two strikeouts in a 7.0-inning, complete-game 7-1 victory at Coolray Field. He is 10-12 with a 3.51 ERA in 40 career appearances, including 37 starts, with Gwinnett, and this will be his second consecutive year as a non-roster invitee for spring training.
Yepez, 33, is the longest-tenured former G-Brave of the group, as he spent the entire past three seasons with Gwinnett. He compiled a .241 batting average with 27 doubles, three home runs and 62 RBIs through 163 games. He threw out 30.8 percent of attempted basestealers in 14 games a year ago, as he battled injuries that sent him to the disabled list three times.
Kennelly, a 26-year-old from Western Australia, spent the 2014 season at Double-A Mississippi after re-signing with the Braves in the previous offseason. Kennelly began the 2013 season with the G-Braves, going 5-for-12 (.417) with a double, a home run and four RBIs in five games before the Braves released him in May. He spent the rest of the year in the Cincinnati Reds’ organization.
Yepez and Kennelly were also non-roster invitees in 2014, as were fellow 2015 invitees Jason Hursh, a right-handed pitcher who was the Braves’ first-round selection (31st overall) in the 2013 June draft and played for Mississippi last year, and catcher Braeden Schlehuber, who also spent the season with the M-Braves.
Atlanta invited nine pitchers overall, including right-handers Michael Kohn, Sugar Ray Marimon and Chien-Ming Wang, as well as lefties Brady Feigl, Wandy Rodriguez, Eric Stults and Donnie Veal.
Those pitchers are accompanied by eight catchers, including Yenier Bello, John Buck, Jesus Flores, Tanner Murphy and Chris O’Dowd.
The Braves also invited infielders Johan Camargo, Daniel Castro, Pedro Ciriaco, Kelly Johnson and Rio Ruiz, as well as outfielders Cedric Hunter and Mallex Smith.
Braves camp opens Feb. 20 when pitchers and catchers report. Full-squad workouts begin Feb. 26, and the team opens its Grapefruit League schedule with a game at 1:05 p.m. March 4 against the New York Mets at Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista.
Following a historic front office revamp in October, the Atlanta Braves are preparing for their most important Hot Stove season in recent franchise history. Here at the G-Blog, we’ll periodically take a look at some of the players that President of Baseball Operations John Hart and the new regime are bringing in, specifically those that will have an impact on the 2015 roster here in Gwinnett.
Yesterday marked Atlanta’s first foray into Major/Minor League free agency this offseason, as the club announced the signing of outfielder Zoilo Almonte to a one-year Major League deal and pitchers Chien-Ming Wang and Donnie Veal to Minor League deals. While these acquisitions aren’t the most notable the Braves will make this winter, they are proof that Hart and company are committed to building a deeper organization through the addition of established veterans.
Anyone who follows the Gwinnett Braves or the Triple-A International League closely will be familiar with all three players. Almonte, Wang and Veal all spent significant time in the IL last season, and each played against the G-Braves on more than one occasion.
Almonte, on Atlanta’s 40-man roster, will contend for a spot on the 25-man Major League roster this Spring. He’s the youngest of the three acquisitions at age 25, and he’s logged brief stints with the New York Yankees in each of the past two seasons. Almonte has never quite settled in at the plate in the big leagues, batting .211 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 47 career games, but he’s done plenty at the Triple-A level to make him an intriguing prospect. In 105 games with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders last year, he batted .261 with 18 doubles, 18 home runs and 69 RBIs. His banner performance of 2014 occurred against Gwinnett at Coolray Field from July 23-24, a game that took two days to complete due to rain. Almonte went 4-for-6 with three homers and seven RBIs in a 12-4 rout of the G-Braves, launching solo and three-run shots off Kanekoa Texeira and adding another three-run clout off Carlos Fisher.
Almonte is reportedly out of options and would have to clear waivers should the Braves ever want to send him to Gwinnett, so it’s unlikely that he’ll bring his homer show back to Coolray Field in 2015. That’s not to say his addition won’t have an effect on the G-Braves’ roster. IL veterans Todd Cunningham and Joey Terdoslavich, also competitors for the Atlanta bench, are now more likely to return to Gwinnett for their third and fourth seasons, respectively. Cunningham (.287, 8 HR, 58 RBI, 19 SB) and Terdoslavich (.256, 15 HR, 61 RBI) both had productive Triple-A seasons a year ago.
In contrast to Almonte, Wang appears to be specifically signed to help the Gwinnett roster. The Taiwanese right-hander posted back-to-back 19-win seasons with the New York Yankees in 2006 and 2007, but suffered a career-altering foot injury in 2008 and has since seen his profile transition to Triple-A workhorse. Since the start of 2011, the 34-year-old has made twice as many starts in the International League (50) as he has in the Major Leagues (22). Last year, Wang made an IL-best 28 starts with two organizations, going 13-8 with a 4.12 ERA with the Louisville Bats (Cincinnati Reds) and the Charlotte Knights (Chicago White Sox). He struck out just 73 batters over 172.2 innings, but kept the ball on the ground with a 1.78 groundout/flyout ratio and only six homers allowed.
Much like Almonte, Wang had success facing the G-Braves last year. He went 1-0 with a 2.92 ERA in two starts while with Louisville, then finished 3-0 with a 3.54 ERA in three starts with Charlotte. He worked at least 6.0 innings in four of his five meetings with Gwinnett, including 7.1 scoreless, nine-hit frames in a win with the Bats on June 14.
If he joins Gwinnett, Wang would be the elder statesman of a starting rotation that could include returnees Cody Martin (7-8, 3.52) and Aaron Northcraft (7-10, 4.70) and Double-A standouts Jason Hursh (11-7, 3.58) and Williams Perez (7-6, 2.91). Another season of 170-plus innings from Wang would also help keep the bullpen fresh in 2015.
Speaking of the Gwinnett bullpen, that’s where you might find the left-handed Veal come April. Veal, a second-round pick by the Chicago Cubs back in 2005, has had a taste of the Majors with the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Chicago White Sox. In 100 total games from 2009 through 2014, he went 3-3 with a 4.87 ERA and one save. His best year was 2011, when he went 0-0 with a 1.38 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 24 relief outings with the White Sox. Far more of his time has been spent at the Triple-A level, where he logged 25 games with the Indianapolis Indians from 2009-2011 and 89 games with the Charlotte Knights from 2012-2014.
After going 2-2 with a 2.70 ERA in 17 relief outings for Charlotte in 2013, Veal took a step back in 2014, going 4-5 with a 5.94 ERA in 37 appearances. Against Gwinnett, he went 0-0 with a 9.00 ERA in three meetings. Though his recent numbers don’t impress, the 30-year-old southpaw will get a look in Major League camp this Spring. Should he fail to make the Atlanta roster, he’ll be an asset for a Gwinnett bullpen in flux. Of last year’s G-Braves relief staff, right-hander Pedro Beato and left-handers Ryan Buchter and Atahualpa Severino are all Minor League free agents. That trio combined to make 131 appearances for the club last season.
Yesterday’s moves don’t represent a “big splash” at the Major League level, but they are the Atlanta Braves’ first steps toward building better organizational depth — and a better Triple-A club — in 2015.
Medlen, who is expecting his first child in the next few weeks, decided that time was not in his favor, so on Friday afternoon at Coolray Field in front of a handful of Braves fans, he announced that he would no longer participate in the classic.
Medlen, who began the season in the bullpen in 2012, was arguably the most dominant starting pitcher in the MLB down the stretch. He posted a 9-0 record with a 0.97 ERA, 84 strikeouts, 10 walks in 83.2 innings.
The 27-year old was disappointed in withdrawing his name, as he was one of few American players to take the plunge and commit early in the process. However, he admitted that he may have jumped the gun a little bit early and did not account for the birth of his child falling near his departure date.
Medlen will leave Team USA in a bind, as they will go into the classic with only three starting pitchers. R.A. Dickey, Derek Holland and Ryan Vogelsong will anchor the staff, as Team USA will try to win their first WBC title.
“You only have your first kid once,” said Atlanta Braves Manager Fredi Gonzalez at the same Coolray Field event.
Medlen will return to his regular routine, preparing for Spring Training after the birth of his child.
The right-hander is a permanent mainstay in Gwinnett Braves history, as he was the first G-Braves pitcher to record a victory. To read more about his climb to the MLB and his history with the Gwinnett Braves, click here.
As Medlen prepares for the season, so do the Gwinnett Braves. They kick off the season Thursday, April 4th at 7:05 p.m. against the Charlotte Knights at Coolray Field. For more information on the G-Braves or Coolray Field, visit the website at Gwinnettbraves.com, or through or social media outlets at facebook.com/GwinnettBraves1 and twitter.com/GwinnettBraves!
Steady rain resulting from a changing weather pattern forced the postponement of Tuesday’s scheduled 2:05 PM game between the Gwinnett Braves and Pawtucket Red Sox at Coolray Field. The game will be made up as a single nine-inning contest on Wednesday, August 29 beginning at 1:05 PM. All tickets for Wednesday’s game will be free to the public.
As a result of the rapidly changing weather ahead of Hurricane Isaac, Wednesday’s game was originally postponed with a doubleheader scheduled for Thursday, August 30 starting at 5:05 PM. That doubleheader is on as planned. With Wednesday now serving as the make-up date for Tuesday’s postponed game, the Gwinnett Braves have decided to make all admission for the 1:05 PM game free of charge. Thursday’s games will still feature regularly-priced tickets.
Fans are advised to continue checking in at gwinnettbraves.com for updated details on the remaining games of this final homestand. For tickets, call the Coolray Field Box Office at (678) 277-0340.
By: Tony Piraro & Dave Lezotte
Photo courtesy of Chris Roughgarden
Gwinnett Braves first baseman Ernesto Mejia has been named the International League Rookie of the Year as well as the Postseason All-Star first baseman for the 2012 season, announced on Tuesday, August 28 by the league office. Mejia is the third-straight G-Brave to win the award for the IL’s top rookie, joining first baseman Freddie Freeman (2010) and pitcher Julio Teheran (2011).
Mejia, 26, established himself as one of the premier hitters for power and average in the IL this season. Entering play on Tuesday, the Guanare, Venezuela native ranked first in the circuit in RBI (91), hits (148) and total bases (253), second in slugging percentage (.517) and at-bats (489), tied for second in home runs (24), third in extra-base hits (56), fourth in OPS (.871), fifth in runs scored (72) and tied for sixth in both doubles (31) and games played (126). His season accolades include the IL’s Batter of the Week award on May 21 and his first Triple-A All-Star Game selection.
Mejia’s numbers are not only among the league’s best, they are also challenging Gwinnett Braves’ franchise records. Mejia’s 91 RBIs are tied alongside Stefan Gartrell (2011) for the most in one season since the team’s arrival to Lawrenceville in 2009. He’s currently one home run shy of tying Gartrell’s record of 25 blasts, also set in 2011. His 148 hits are six away from matching Mauro Gomez’s 2011 record, while his 31 doubles are four away from Freeman’s record of 35 set in 2010.
For the rest of the International League’s 2012 Postseason awards, visit ilbaseball.com.
Mejia and the rest of the Gwinnett Braves continue the final homestand of the 2012 season on Tuesday, August 28 against the Pawtucket Red Sox. The game time, originally scheduled for 7:05 PM, has been moved to 2:05 PM as a result of rain expected from Hurricane Isaac. The radio broadcast will air on WDUN 550 AM / 102.9 FM in Gainesville, Georgia, while the television broadcast will air on CSS.
Please note that game times for all remaining Gwinnett Braves home games, including Fan Appreciation Night on Thursday, August 30, may change due to Hurricane Isaac. Check in at gwinnettbraves.com for updated information on game times. For tickets, call the Coolray Field Box Office at (678) 277-0340.
By: Tony Piraro & Dave Lezotte
Photo courtesy of Karl Moore
For the second-straight night, Syracuse needed just one pitcher to shut down the Gwinnett Braves. Right-hander Jeff Mandel threw the second-straight complete game shutout against the G-Braves in as many nights, leading the Chiefs to a 7-0 win at Coolray Field. Mandel’s six hitter, his first nine-inning effort this season, ensured a split of the four-game series.
Syracuse left-hander John Lannan threw 9.0 scoreless, three-hit innings on Saturday night, and Mandel (W, 5-5) continued the trend on Sunday, scattering six hits over 9.0 innings while striking out four. He walked none in a 102-pitch, 69-strike outing.
After escaping major damage in the second inning, Gwinnett starter Yohan Flande was not able to make it past the third. The left-hander surrendered four runs on five hits in the frame, including five-straight one-out hits. Josh Johnson and Chris Marrero reached on back-to-back singles, and Carlos Rivero singled to left-center, scoring them both. Jesus Valdez singled to score Rivero, and Sandy Leon added a double plating Valdez for a 4-0 lead.
Flande (L, 7-9) allowed four earned runs on six hits, walked three and struck out two over just 2.2 innings of work. Cole McCurry relieved Flande with two outs in the third inning and worked 3.1 scoreless innings. McCurry struck out three and walked none, departing after Stefan Gartrell singled in his pinch-hit at-bat for the pitcher in the sixth.
Ryan Buchter entered the game for the G-Braves in the seventh and allowed three more runs over 1.1 innings. Rivero singled home Johnson to raise the lead to 5-0 in the seventh, and a two-run triple by Eury Perez ensured the final score of 7-0 in the eighth. Anthony Varvaro relieved the left-hander, pitching 1.2 innings of scoreless baseball with one strikeout.
Monday, August 27th G-Braves Starting Line-up from Coolray Field:
The Gwinnett Braves (61-75) welcome the Pawtucket Red Sox (73-63) to town on Monday night as the two teams begin the final four-game series of the season at Coolray Field. First pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM. The Gwinnett starting pitcher has yet to be announced, while the PawSox will start right-hander Nelson Figueroa (10-5, 4.40). The radio broadcast will air on WDUN 550 AM / 102.9 FM in Gainesville, Georgia with Tony Schiavone calling the play-by-play. The television broadcast will air on CSS.
Pawtucket (2nd IL North) vs Gwinnett (4th IL South)
Monday night is Kids Eat Free Monday as all kids 12 and under will receive a voucher for a free hot dog, a bag of chips and a small soda. It’s also the fifth night of “Drive Me Crazy” as the G-Braves gather donations of canned foods, clothes, sports equipment, toys and more to restock local shelters and storage centers. Tickets for all Gwinnett Braves home games are on sale now at the Coolray Field Box Office. Call (678) 277-0340 or visit gwinnettbraves.com for more information.
Pawtucket Red Sox Batting Order:
1) Nate Spears, 1B
2) Ivan DeJesus, 2B
3) Jeremy Hazelbaker, DH
4) Tony Thomas, LF
5) Danny Valencia, 3B
6) Dan Butler, C
7) Jason Repko, CF
8) Jon Hee, SS
9) Che-Hsuan Lin, RF
G-Braves Batting Order:
1) Jose Constanza, LF
2) Jack Wilson, SS
3) Lyle Overbay, DH
4) Ernesto Mejia, 1B
5) Josh Kroeger, RF
6) Rusty Ryal, 3B
7) Brian Friday, 2B
8) J.C. Boscan, C
9) Luis Durango, CF
Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess
The Gwinnett Braves have unveiled plans for the “Drive Me Crazy” outreach event, scheduled for Thursday, August 23 through Thursday, August 30. The team will be hosting drives for canned foods, clothes, sports equipment, toys and books during all home games that week at Coolray Field.
Tonight the G-Braves will be celebrating a host of special events, including:
- Drive Me Crazy – The Gwinnett Braves want to drive you crazy with a mega-everything drive during the last homestand of the 2012 regular season. Help re-stock local shelters and storage centers with canned foods, clothes, sports equipment, toys and books. Please bring your donations to any game, from Aug. 23-30 to help support the Drive Me Crazy event at Coolray Field.
- Cancer Awareness Night – Join the Gwinnett Braves at Coolray Field for Cancer Awareness Night.
- Jersey Auction – Come out to Coolray Field and place your bid for a Gwinnett Braves game-worn jersey. Each jersey worn during the game will be auctioned off to benefit the Gwinnett Medical Center Foundation.
Please bring donations to any of the games that week, including 7:05 PM games against Syracuse from August 23-25, a 5:05 PM game against Syracuse on Sunday, August 26 and 7:05 PM games against Pawtucket from August 27-30. Donated items will help restock local shelters, storage centers, pantries and food banks in a response to combat depleted resources.
The Gwinnett Braves (61-73) take on the Syracuse Chiefs (63-71) in game three of the four-game series on Saturday night at Coolray Field, first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM. The G-Braves will start right-hander Julio Teheran (7-7, 5.48) against Syracuse left-hander John Lannan (7-11, 4.89). Listen to the broadcast on WDUN 550 AM / 102.9 FM in Gainesville, Georgia. The game will also air on CSS.
All donations will be given to partnering non-profit groups who show the most need. Cash donations will not be accepted. For more information on the “Drive Me Crazy” event, please contact Gwinnett Braves Community Relations Manager Lindsay Harmon at (678) 277-0346 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tickets for all Gwinnett Braves home games are on sale now at the Coolray Field Box Office. Call (678) 277-0340 or visit gwinnettbraves.com for more information.
By: Tony Piraro
Photo courtesy of Pouya Dianat
Chipper Jones will go down as one of the greatest third basemen to ever play the game of Major League Baseball, if not the greatest. His time in the game has been highly publicized, but nothing has been as crazy as his final season in the big leagues as the future Hall-of-Famer prepares to exit the only profession he has ever known. The stats don’t lie for Jones, however it is Chipper the man that has been lovingly embraced by the Atlanta Braves family over two decades of brilliance.
“I’m very proud that for 23 years, I’ve donned one uniform — the red, white and blue of the Atlanta Braves,” said Jones.
For his career, the eight-time All-Star has seen his share of change within the organization. As a new crop of young Braves begin their respective MLB journey’s, Jones is there for guidance and wisdom. He understands the ups and downs of the business and has been around it long enough to help out the newcomers in Atlanta each season, such as Craig Kimbrel, Jason Heyward, Tommy Hanson and Freddie Freeman to name a few. Chipper helped create Braves Country and is the face of a franchise that won 14 straight division titles in the 90’s and early 2000’s.
“I often admired, when I was coming up, guys like Cal Ripken and Tony Gwynn, who were able to work with their organization so that they could stay in one place,” Jones said. “They knew how important it was to stay in one place and be the face of the franchise. While I don’t consider myself to be in their realm, I’m awfully proud to say I’ve been a part of this organization for so long.”
Jones has a career batting average of .304, alongside 2,695 hits, 464 career home runs, 1,610 RBI, 1,603 runs scored, 544 doubles, 150 stolen bases and an extrordinary 1,489 walks to just 1,390 walks. Not to mention, countless all-star appearances, 14 straight playoff appearances, two Silver Sluggers (99-00), the 1999 National League MVP award and a World Series Title in 1995.
Photo courtesy of Pouya Dianat
“I look at the numbers as me just going out to do my job,” said Jones. “That’s the way I’ve always approached it. I’ve never really thought about my place or anything like that. But when you grew up hearing about Mickey the way I did and with the reverence that I did from my father, to pass him in career RBIs is quite a feat.”
Chipper Jones was the No. 1 overall selection the 1990 MLB Amateur Draft by the Braves and was ranked the No. 1 prospect in minor league baseball during the 1993 season before he spent all of his time with the Triple-A affiliate of the Braves in Richmond. In 93, Jones hit .325 for the R-Braves, alongside 97 runs scored, 174 hits, 31 doubles, 12 triples, 13 home runs, 89 RBI, 23 stolen bases and 57 walks earned in the International League. His time in Triple-A was short-lived, but the numbers and memories that he registered that season will never be forgotten. Following his dominant 1993 season in the IL, Jones was promoted to Atlanta where he spent his 1994 Rookie year.
Obviously, most players begin to slow down near the end of their career, especially in their final season. Jones has made a mockery of that notion, seemingly getting better with age like fine wine. Chipper was already named a 2012 all-star, alongside being the captain and unquestioned leader of a potential playoff contending Braves team (66-49).
Stay glued to The G-Blog in the coming days for the second part of The Chipper Jones Interview.
By: Tony Piraro